Shellharbour Dolphins: all year swimmers
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During their 6 week international fieldwork placement at the Australasian Occupational Science Centre in Nowra, New South Wales, Australia, Victoria Valente and Katie Anderson, final year Masters in Occupational Therapy students at the University of Western Ontario spent time with the Dolphins, a local community-based, occupation-focused program. While attending one of the early morning sessions at the seaside swimming pool, the students observed and interviewed Dolphin members to explore why they participated daily and to understand how their participation in the club meets some of their occupational needs. The following essay, with comments from Dolphin members and illustrated with photos taken during the students' visit, supports Doble and Santha's (2008) contention that individuals are more likely to experience well-being when they choose to engage in occupations and orchestrate their lives to consistently meet their occupational needs. The students' visit with the Dolphins reinforced for them the importance of people having opportunities and choices to participate in community-based, occupation-focused programs.